Spring 2015
What a find
Reusing and recycling can yield some very attractive results.

What a Find!

PLACES Facility Manager Rob Jones shops weekly for free at McMRF, the Montgomery County Material Reuse Facility, which collects donated materials to benefit nonprofits like PLACES.

Here are some items Rob has picked up recently to equip our facilities:

» Couches, rugs and laminate flooring

» A Pier 1 Imports wardrobe

» Carpeting and driveway patch material

» Office furniture, office supplies and gardening supplies


PLACES staff teaching residents to recycle

Residents at the Adult Care Facilities are learning that if they collect, bag and deliver used aluminum cans to First Street Recycling, they can earn a little extra spending money for ice cream or a movie.


They get to gas up and go – for less

Each PLACES Residential Adult Care Facility is saving an average of $100 per month on gas by cashing in Kroger fuel points when buying gas for a PLACES van. Because each facility spends hundreds of dollars on food several times a month at Kroger, “those fuel points add up,” says Stacy Nolan, human resources specialist at PLACES.


Re-Enroll Now!

Kroger RewardsDo you shop at Kroger? You can support PLACES through the Kroger Community Rewards program at no cost to you!

Just swipe your Kroger Plus Card, and you’ll earn rewards for PLACES.

Here’s how to enroll or re-enroll:
1. Visit krogercommunityrewards.com
2. Sign in to your online account or create an account
3. Click Enroll Now
4. Select PLACES as your organization to support by typing 81996 or PLACES
5. Click Enroll to complete your enrollment


Sign Up Now!

Good NeighborDo you shop at Dorothy Lane Market (DLM)? You can support PLACES through the DLM Good Neighbor Program at no cost to you!

DLM will donate $40,000 to the community in 2015. PLACES will receive a pro-rated portion of the $40,000 depending on the amount you spend at DLM.

Just scan your Club DLM Card so your purchases can be credited.

Here’s how to sign up:
1. Visit dorothylane.com/clubdlm/goodneighbor.pl
2. Choose PLACES as your
charity by typing PLACES, Inc. in the Name field.
3. Enter your Club Number from your Club DLM Card
4. Enter 848 as the PLACES
Charity ID
5. Click Submit to complete your signup

‘We’re not just another group home’

A Day in the Life at Randolph House, a PLACES Residential Adult Care Facility

The founders of PLACES in 1988 had a vision: to provide a safe home and a family setting for people trying to recover from mental illnesses. That’s what we still do in our Residential Adult Care Facilities program, which provides housing and 24/7 personal care services for 36 adults diagnosed with severe mental health disorders.

Facilities like this are often called group homes. But the people at PLACES agree: “We’re not just another group home.” Find out why with this look inside Randolph House, a PLACES Adult Care Facility for eight residents on North Main Street.

7 a.m.: Up and at ’em!

 Residents practice life skills, like cleaning up the kitchen, and take pride in their contributions.

Thanks to the night staff, some residents are already awake and dressed when Residential Manager Rondel Richardson and Residential Adviser Lisa Butler arrive at 8 a.m. They wake up the remaining residents.

“It’s our responsibility to make sure all the residents look nice and dress for the weather,” says Rondel.

At the medication cart, residents take their own medications with supervision after breakfast. Cereal? Oatmeal? Yogurt? Waffles? Each resident decides.

“I know the joy they feel when they make their own choices, so we try to give them as much independence as possible,” she says.

9 a.m.: Skill building

Rondel and Lisa check today’s calendar to see who has medical or mental health appointments. Residents will either catch the bus or have their case manager take them. “If someone has a medical procedure, like a colonoscopy, we take them and help them through it,” Rondel says.

Lisa likes taking residents to appointments “in case there are any questions or changes in their medications,” she says. “I look out for their best interests.”

Rondel drives three residents, Charles, John and Melissa, to Senior Resource Connection so they can pick up their checks and cash them at Key Bank. “We help everyone budget their spending money,” she says.

Rondel takes John and Melissa back to Randolph House so they can shower and work on life skills. It’s their laundry day, so they will separate, wash, dry, fold and put away their own clothes; wash their bedding; and vacuum and clean their bedroom with Lisa supervising.

Later, Lisa gets the residents outside to do yardwork, pull weeds and set up the patio furniture. “With seven residents helping, it doesn’t take long,” Lisa says.

10 a.m.: Taking care of business

Meanwhile, Rondel drives Charles to Eye-Mart. “He’s broken three pairs of glasses, so he’s using some of his shopping money for new ones,” she says.

They head to Shoe Carnival, but not before Rondel reminds Charles of her rule: No yelling her name in the store. “It’s part of the social skills we try to teach,” she says.

Charles chooses new shoes, and Rondel picks up new tennis shoes for Melissa. “They also like to go to Walmart,” Rondel says. “They put their own things in the cart, and they take pencil and paper to track what they’re spending on things like clothes and music. It gives them some control over their lives.”

11:30 a.m.: Meal prep, round 1

Rondel and Charles return to find everyone getting ready for lunch. Lisa’s cooking homemade pulled pork for sandwiches along with creamed spinach and gelatin. Residents set the table and prepare the bread.

Noon: Lunch and skill building

Residents take their midday prescriptions and then sit with the staff to enjoy Lisa’s lunch and talk about their morning. Residents rinse their plates and help with kitchen cleanup. Then it’s time for more life skills.

“We clean the bathrooms daily, and the residents take turns,” Rondel says. “They’re so aware of what it takes to run a house.”

1:30 p.m.: Off to work

With their dinners packed, residents Greg and Roger catch the bus to work the 2-8 p.m. shift at MONCO Enterprises, which employs people with developmental disabilities. They might fold boxes, make wire hangers or collate papers for local businesses.

Peter rides the bus to The Castle in Centerville, a gathering place for people with mental illness and disorders, but he’ll be back before dinner.

2 p.m.: Around town

It’s Bargain Tuesday at the Danbarry Cinemas in Huber Heights, so the remaining five residents see a movie for just $1.75 – but not until Rondel and Lisa take them to Dollar General to pick up snacks for later.

“One resident has trouble seeing, so when we’re on an outing, someone grabs her hand to make sure she’s accounted for,” Rondel says. “We all really care about each other.”

4 p.m.: Meal prep, round 2

Lisa and the residents get busy preparing a roast, yams, spinach and gelatin for dinner.

“Preparing healthy, appetizing meals is important and takes time,” Rondel says.

5 p.m.: A family meal

 Residential Manager Rondel Richardson lets residents choose a movie to see at the theater.

Residents take their evening medications and then sit down with the staff for dinner. Everyone pitches in to tidy up and then wash and dry the dishes.

“Providing structure every day helps the residents maintain a clean, safe home,” Rondel says. “It requires lots of prompting because of the mental illnesses they have, but it helps make them successful.”

Evening: Quiet time

The evening is for relaxing. Residents play cards, knit or watch television; others get picked up to spend the evening with their family. Marsha goes on a date with her boyfriend. Sam practices the guitar. The night staff takes over.

After Greg and Roger arrive home from MONCO, the residents enjoy an evening snack. Later, some head back to their room. Night owls settle in to pop popcorn and watch a late-night movie with the staff.

Says Rondel: “Everything we do here, we are a family. The residents take care of us as much as we take care of them.”

Besides the Residential Adult Care Facilities program, PLACES also operates a Supportive Living Program for clients and a Housing First program for tenants.

What you may not know about the Residential Adult Care Facilities program at PLACES

PLACES residents are people just like you and me. They are not scary or violent. But they are vulnerable because they struggle with mental illness and need help with everyday living skills.

 PLACES helps residents live happier, healthier, more independent lives.

Every resident is on medication for their mental illness. Consistent medication stabilizes their condition and helps them enjoy a better quality of life.

All residents receive mental health counseling. Each resident works with an agency such as the Consumer Advocacy Model Program at Samaritan Behavioral Health, Daymont Behavioral Healthcare, Eastway Behavioral Healthcare or South Community Behavioral Healthcare.

Residents are free to come and go as they please. They are not sedated, confined or locked up. They often walk or ride the bus to restaurants and appointments.

Some residents have a job. Eight of the 36 PLACES residents work at MONCO Enterprises doing either paid or volunteer work. Residents have made dog treats sold in local stores, labeled items and cleaned hotel rooms, among other tasks.

Some residents go to school or volunteer. A few residents are working toward their GED or attending classes at Sinclair Community College. Others volunteer at SICSA and other organizations.

A few residents have college degrees. Some residents were high school valedictorians; one resident wrote a children’s book, and another was a college athlete. However, mental illness now makes coping with everyday life difficult.

Eligible individuals can decide if they would like to live at PLACES. When there’s an opening, we give priority to people being discharged from statewide behavioral healthcare facilities such as Summit Behavioral Healthcare in Cincinnati.

Residents make progress at their own pace. Over time, about 10 percent of residents are able to live more independently and move into their own homes.

Celebrating progress toward recovery

Residents, clients and tenants receive 159 awards

PLACES in February honored 110 residents, clients and tenants with 159 awards at the 15th annual Recognition Program at David’s United Church of Christ in Kettering. Also attending with PLACES staff were three Board of Trustees members: President William Schuerman, Andy Storar and Michael Bly. Here’s a recap of the awards:

34 Vocational Achievement awards were given to people who worked in paid employment or participated in a vocational training program.

14 Educational Achievement awards went to people who are working on their GEDs, enrolled in traditional high school programs or taking college-level or technical courses.

17 Community Service awards were given to people who volunteer in peer support programs, animal shelters, church groups and other activities.

57 Reach for Recovery awards went to people who have taken positive, personal steps toward their own recovery.

28 Supportive Living Program graduates were recognized for reaching their goals. They no longer need services from PLACES.

Four Resident of the Year, one Client of the Year and four Tenant of the Year awards went to people who showed the most progress in their recovery.

Honorees received certificates for their achievements. Here’s how PLACES recognized the Resident of the Year at Marty’s House, one of the Adult Care Facilities:

“This resident takes us on a joyous ride across oceans and over rainbows every day. Even after working all day at MONCO, the first thing out of her mouth is, ‘Are we going anywhere?’

“She loves going on activities with staff and residents and enjoys being out in the community. She will always help out when asked and often offers assistance without being asked. She attends appointments, completes life skills and does whatever is expected of her, all without a complaint. Her positive outlook on life has allowed her to make remarkable progress toward meeting her recovery goals.”

What’s Happening at PLACES

Thursday mornings: Supportive Living Program support groups with Penney Kramer and Charles Pitman

Friday mornings: Supportive Living Program group exercise class at the Lohrey Recreation Center

May 7: PLACES Bowling League Awards Banquet at Kohler Catering, Kettering

May 10-16: Ohio Nonprofit Awareness & Appreciation Week

May 18: PLACES Board of Trustees Annual Meeting featuring the year in review and a Housing First program update

May 21: Staff training: “Mental illness and substance abuse” (guest speaker from Nova Behavioral Health) at Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley

May 29: PLACES All-Staff Meeting: service recognitions, new staff welcome and meet-and-greet event at the Montgomery County ADAMHS Board

June 11: Staff training: “How law enforcement officers work with people who have mental illness” at Goodwill Easter Seals Miami Valley

June 12: PLACES summer picnic celebration with food, games and fun for residents, clients, tenants and staff at Wax Park, Moraine

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